Almost two years ago, Gov. Mike Leavitt proclaimed his innocence in the Great Olympic Bid Buying Scandal, even though he had assigned one of his top number-crunchers to keep an eye on things over at Tom Welch’s bid committee office. When asked by reporters how he could have not known about bribes being paid to IOC officials, Leavitt uttered those now famous words, “I didn’t connect the dots.”
Why bring up this nasty stain on Utah history now that the bid scandal and ensuing federal trial of Welch and his sidekick Dave Johnson have apparently disappeared down a rat hole in the courtroom of Judge David Sam? Well, because the governor wants to replace Utah’s motto: “A pretty, great state” with one of his own.
Ready? Here’s Leavitt’s proposed new state motto: “Utah! Where ideas connect.” Here at SmartBomb, the staff got a big kick out of that one. After much research and study, we came up with what we believe is a better motto: “Utah! Where we can’t connect the dots.” Ha ha.
• She’s back. Former Mayor Deedee Corradini is making her triumphant return to Zion, proclaimed the Deseret News in a recent puff piece on page one. The Deedster, who married South Carolina millionaire industrialist John Huebner, told the D-News she’s urging hubby to relocate his industrial lighting company to the Beehive State.
The Deedster informed the paper that hubby would spring for a new Park City mansion so that she could be closer to the Olympic Games (OG), the Olympic Family (OF)—for which she is well suited, by the way—and the Olympic Movement (OM, not to be confused with BM).
The gushing story didn’t mention that were it not for interference from Sen. Orrin Hatch, the Deedster would have been indicted by a federal grand jury in the Bonneville Pacific fraud case. It also forgot to note Deedee’s Giftgate scandal, where she used her position as mayor to shake down local businessmen for $200 grand or so for her personal bank account.
The prodigal daughter returns! Look for her at the Opening Ceremonies. She’ll be the one in red on the front row. Maybe she can talk Rocky Anderson into letting her wave the Olympic flag—just for old times’ sake.
• With the Olympics and all the problems and challenges associated with them a scant 150 days away, the big Y2K scare is just a distant memory. But we’ve only recently learned that at least one state agency was expecting the worst. The Utah Legislature set aside $13.5 million to bring various state departments and their computers up to speed so that the year ending in ’00 wouldn’t send us into a tailspin.
But at the Department of Human Services there apparently was fear that despite all efforts, calamity was on the horizon. That agency spent over a half million dollars on portable generators, cooking grills, ready-to-eat meals and used water storage barrels that turned out to be contaminated. Your taxes at work.